By Sgt. Kerensa Hardy
First published in
SFOR Informer#113, May 16, 2001
Members of the American support element gave
students a tool to broaden their minds.
Nisici - Students greeted the US soldiers with much
excitement and anticipation May 8, in part because the children
knew their visitors came bearing gifts.
The US Base Support Battalion (BSB), represented by its commander
and chaplain, donated a computer to the eighth-grade students
at Nisici elementary school. This is the first part of "Adopt
a Classroom" initiative in which the BSB wants other national
support elements to get involved.
his commitment to reach out to the community and to expand the
knowledge base (the BSB commander) has supported the effort to
bring a computer to your school," said Chaplain (Capt.) Gregory
McCrimmon, BSB chaplain, through interpreter Damir Gulamovic.
"We will continue to work to bring other computers to the
school so that you will have access to a larger world that we
call the Internet."
The chaplain challenged Ilijas Deputy Mayor Dusko Drljaca to install
a phone line so that the students could begin to access information
from all over the world to broaden their horizons.
"Through this technology, the sky is the limit," he
BSB Commander Lt. Col. Herbert Grogan has been in Sarajevo for
nearly a year and said he's witnessed a lot of change. He referred
to the students as "the flowers of Bosnia and Herzegovina,"
borrowing a term used by US Ambassador to BiH Thomas Miller, as
they are preparing to "grow" from one stage to another
- go from elementary school to secondary school.
"We share the opinion with you that these children are 'the
flowers of (BiH),'" Drljaca said in the closing remarks.
"You did a lot for these 'flowers.' We believe, in co-operation
with the teachers and staff, they will be able to gain knowledge."
The computer will definitely aid in the education process, one
teacher said. Currently, teachers use only a blackboard and what's
stored in their mental database to teach the 150 students who
attend the school.
"This is a big change," said Sehija Razanica, teacher
of the eighth-grade students who will benefit from the computer.
"The kids were more than happy this morning when they found
out about the computer.
"They are finishing elementary school but this computer will
be very useful for generations that are coming," she said.
"One is not enough, but it's a start."
Related links: Nations of SFOR: US